Analysis of the deterioration rate of ship handling proficiency of Surface Warfare Officers on shore duty
Alaniz, Brad A.
Krebs, William K.
Lucas, Tom W.
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This thesis examines the deterioration of ship handling proficiency of Surface Warfare Officers on shore duty. A Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) develops ship handling proficiency during his or her first and second ship tours, then spends two or more years ashore. Upon returning to sea duty, an officer is expected to be proficient in ship handling even though it has been two years since the last shipboard evolution. Ashore SWOs were tested to determine whether their ship handling skills or knowledge about navigation rules had degraded over time. During the first phase of the experiment, subjects were immersed in a virtual environment to assess procedural knowledge of a ship handling task. The second phase of the experiment, designed to measure declarative knowledge of ship handling, consisted of a short written test. The results of the experiment showed no deterioration of SWOs ship handling skills over time. The results did show a significant deterioration of declarative knowledge of navigation rules. Actual or potential applications of this research include revising current Surface Warfare Officer training programs to account for the fact that not all knowledge is lost to memory equally. Periodic refresher training for SWOs on shore duty is also suggested by these results.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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